Frequently Asked Questions

Please find some commonly asked dermatology questions outlined below. For more information please complete a contact form or call our office.
Do I need a referral to make an appointment?

Most medical specialists request a referral from either a GP or another specialist. This is partly to try to ensure that the specialist you are seeing is appropriate for you and your condition. Medicare will also reimburse part of the cost if a referral has been provided. Patients without a referral can be seen but Medicare will not provide any rebate to the patient.

Can I claim a Medicare rebate?

Yes, if you have a valid referral (GP referrals are usually valid for 12 months) and a valid Medicare card. This applies only to medical consultations and treatments (vs. cosmetic ones).

Can I claim on my private health insurance?

Unfortunately, no. For Australian residents, federal legislation does not allow private insurance providers to cover medical services performed outside a hospital setting.

What causes acne?

Acne is most common during puberty but can also develop in adulthood. In teens, acne is the result of hormonal changes with puberty. The regions commonly affected include the face, shoulder, neck, chest, and the upper back. Acne is formed when the oil glands under the skin secrete excess oil, which, along with the dead skin cells clog the pores of your skin. Bacteria are trapped inside leading to redness and swelling.

What is eczema?

Atopic eczema or dermatitis is a common condition that often begins in infancy or early childhood but can also begin in young adults or even later in life. The skin becomes red, swollen and very itchy. In infants, atopic dermatitis often affects the cheeks, scalp, outsides of the arms and legs and the trunk. In children and adults the inflammation involves the creases in the front of the arms and behind the knee, often the wrists, ankles and buttocks.

Is it normal to lose hair?

Yes, it is normal to lose some hair as a part of normal hair growth, but when the hair loss is severe, it is considered a disorder.

Why do we get wrinkles?

A wrinkle is a fold or crease in the skin. As we age, the supportive components of our skin which maintains the skin texture, such as elastic fibres, collagen fibres, and hyaluronic acid become damaged. As a result, our skin becomes thinner, drier, and less elastic and starts to sag. Wrinkles begin to develop in the areas such as the forehead, and around the eyes and lips.

How to avoid pigmentation problems?

You can prevent the occurrence of pigmentation by applying an SPF 50+ sunscreen daily, even if it is cloudy, or overcast. There are two types of sunscreens, physical and chemical sunscreens. Physical sunscreens are not absorbed by the skin and provide longer lasting protection. Chemical sunscreens are absorbed by the skin and require application every 2 hours.

What concerning features do I look for in a mole?

Any mole that is changing in appearance, shape, colour, size and character should be assessed. Patients with lots of moles may have increased risks.